Spatial learning as an adaptation in hummingbirds

Susan Cole, F. Reed Hainsworth, Alan C. Kamil, Terre Mercier, Larry L. Wolf

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

73 Scopus citations


An ecological approach based on food distribution suggests that hummingbirds should more easily learn to visit a flower in a new location than to learn to return to a flower in a position just visited, for a food reward. Experimental results support this hypothesis as well as the general view that differences in learning within and among species represent adaptations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)655-657
Number of pages3
Issue number4560
StatePublished - Jan 1 1982


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Cite this

Cole, S., Hainsworth, F. R., Kamil, A. C., Mercier, T., & Wolf, L. L. (1982). Spatial learning as an adaptation in hummingbirds. Science, 217(4560), 655-657.